The hype that’s called Vetements

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The subversive brand has definitely shaken up the luxury fashion industry. The design collective Vetements, launched in 2014 by brothers Demna and Guram Gvasalia, stood out right away with its deconstructed, oversized pieces. After three years in the fashion industry Vetements has become a worldwide hype amongst fashion insiders.

Demna Gvasalia, currently creative director at Balenciaga and head designer of Vetements, decided to launch Vetements together with his brother after discussing the fashion industry with their friends. They realized how frustrated they were and how they had lost fun in fashion, and thus Vetements was born.

The brand breathed new life into fashion by turning its head on all the basic principles that fashion had set for itself. It left behind the weighty concepts and themes in high-fashion and lied its focus on just designing clothes. Hence the name Vetements, which is French for clothing.

But no brand divides opinions quite like Vetements. By not conforming to conventional ideas and embodying everything that’s wrong with fashion, the brand is now one of the most talked about names in the fashion industry. But there’s also quite some people who don’t understand what this hype is all about.

The high-priced pieces don’t help when it comes to understanding the earth of the brand. Asking prices nearly as high as couture-level for clothing that appears to be regular streetwear (for a padded oversized woven shirt you now pay €2380,-) seems to be one of the issues people have with the brand. Vetements proved this point to be invalid, with the high prices being due to the use of higher-quality fabrics, production being based in Europe and items not being mass-produced.

The main point of discussion is the look and feel of the designs. It’s a mixture of streetwear, iconic logo dropping and really weird, exaggerated cuts. Items like the T-shirt with the logo of logistics company DHL (which was priced at €210,-) and the way they brought anti-fashion back to fashion created a lot of divided opinions. Some people even describe Vetements’ designs as plain ugly. But the brand is still a big success, and luxury vendors who stock the collection say it sells very well.

The success of the brand is a sign that people don’t really care about the grand and royale avant-garde concepts in fashion anymore. We just want clothes to be wearable. The brand most definitely succeeds in making a righteous critique of consumer culture and believes that too many clothes are bad for both the environment and the soul. But trends and hypes are never there to last, and the fashion world will most definitely move on to the next thing once Vetements had its moment.

Are you a fan of the Vetements hype or are you a nay-sayer?


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